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IL business attorneyFor many people, starting a business is the ultimate dream and though it may seem unattainable to some, it has been a reality for millions of Americans. According to the Small Business Administration (SBA), there were 31.7 million small businesses operating in the United States in 2020. Small businesses play an essential role in the U.S. economy, as they are responsible for employing nearly half, or around 47.1 percent of the American workforce. Starting your own business may seem daunting, especially when it comes to the legal side of things, but a business formation attorney can help guide you through the process. Here are a few things you should keep in mind when starting your business:

Make Sure You Have a Clear and Understandable Business Plan

The first step to creating any successful business is having a business plan written out. A business plan is exactly what it sounds like -- a plan for your business. A thorough business plan will contain information about the industry in which your business will operate and information about the scope of your business itself, a sales and marketing plan, how the business will be owned and managed, the way the business will operate, and basic information about the business finances.

Research the Market You Are Interested In

Before you start your business, you should do a lot of research. Writing your business plan will take a lot of research, but you should be intimately familiar with your industry if you are not familiar with it already. You should have a basic idea of what your competitors are doing, what they are selling, and how they are selling it. This can also help you develop and implement goals for your own business.

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IL divorce lawyerFor many spouses, contemplating the multitude of issues that will need to be addressed during the divorce process can be very stressful. As you consider how you and your spouse will divide your marital property, how you will share custody of your children, and other concerns related to the dissolution of your marriage, you may be preparing for a difficult and contentious battle. However, you may be able to make matters easier by determining how you can avoid conflict and cooperate with your spouse to make decisions about your divorce. Instead of resolving legal issues through a costly and time-consuming divorce trial, you can use alternative dispute resolution. Mediation is one of the most popular and beneficial methods of resolving disputes. Whether you choose this option on your own or are ordered by the court to proceed to mediation, you can realize a variety of benefits.

Reasons to Choose Divorce Mediation

During mediation, you and your spouse will work together to create a divorce settlement that will detail all of the decisions made about the outstanding issues in your case. A neutral mediator will guide you through these discussions, make sure you understand how the law applies to you, and offer suggestions on how you can resolve your differences.

There are a number of reasons why mediation can be beneficial, including:

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IL real estate lawyerIf you are a first-time homebuyer, there are many legal terms with which you may not be familiar. In residential real estate terms, a deed is a document that proves the transfer of a title of a specific property from one individual to another. A title is the legal right to use and alter the property if the owner so chooses. With a title, the owner can also transfer interest or any portion to others through the deed, which represents the right of the owner to claim the property. The main difference is the title describes or names the primary holder of the property, whereas the deed is the official legal document that is filed.

The Importance of a Title

There is an old saying, “What is in a title?” Basically, title is the legal term that refers to ownership of something. It may be helpful to think of the word “entitle,” which means having ownership or control over something. In real estate, that would be property. A title is a very important element in residential real estate transactions. When a person holds a title to a home, they possess the legal rights, ownership control, and responsibility of that house. Titles can be held by a single person or by two or more individuals, such as a married couple or an adult and his or her parents. It is important to note that titles can also be held by corporations, organizations, and trusts where all the involved parties share certain ownership rights.

Details of the Deed

A deed is the actual paperwork that is signed by someone who is selling or transferring over the rights to their property, and this person is typically known as the grantor. The person buying or taking possession of the home is referred to as the grantee. The deed includes the names of the property’s seller and the buyer, and the seller must sign it to confirm the transfer of ownership.

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IL estate lawyerThe topic of estate planning is important, but it can seem daunting to think about. When a person dies, an estate tax is imposed on the value of the estate left behind, before any beneficiaries (family members or close friends) inherit anything.

An inheritance tax is imposed on an individual who receives any type of inheritance. Although some states do have inheritance taxes, there is no federal or state tax imposed on inheritances in Illinois. It is important to distinguish between these two kinds of taxes in order to protect the rights of those on the receiving end.

Understanding the Illinois Estate Tax

There is both a federal estate tax and an Illinois estate tax, however, the size of the estate must be significant for either one of these types of estate tax to apply. The Illinois estate tax rate is graduated and can go up to 16 percent, but it is only applied on estates worth more than $4 million. This means that if a decedent’s total estate is worth less than $4 million, the estate does not have to pay anything to the state. If an estate is worth more than $4 million, there is a progressive estate tax rate, and the estate will have to pay before money can be distributed to any heirs.

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IL divorce lawyerIt is difficult to imagine life before the Internet or social media. Information that used to be found in libraries can now be found on a computer or phone with the click of a button. Sites such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are popular with people of all ages and backgrounds. Many individuals find them an ideal way to keep in touch with family or friends who may live far away since they can post photographs and videos of themselves or their kids. Watching a soccer game or musical performance online can be a good substitution if someone cannot be there in person, especially this past year due to coronavirus restrictions. Although there are many benefits of social media, there can be negatives, too, especially if a couple is going through a divorce. In some cases, posts or comments made on a website can be used as evidence in legal proceedings such as asset division, spousal maintenance, or child custody.

Think Before Posting

Connecting with others electronically has become even more prominent during the COVID-19 pandemic. Virtual visits through video conferencing apps or SnapChat and TikTok allow people who are staying at home the ability to stay in touch with loved ones who they cannot see in person. With more time on their hands, people have turned to social media sites to pass the time. However, it is important to be careful about what is posted if you are going through a divorce, as certain things can be misinterpreted and used against you.

Consider these tips regarding social media use while your marriage is ending:

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